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A successful 10th international session in Switzerland for IFGR !

The 10th international session of Initiatives for the Future of Great Rivers devoted to the relationship of cities with their rivers and lakes took place in Switzerland between September 27th and October 1st.

The 9th international session of the association was held in China in October 2019 on the theme “River and Biodiversity”. Two years later, IFGR members got to meet again, upon invitation by the Geneva Water Office, and thanks to the contribution of our partners on site: the Valais and Vaud cantons, the CIPEL (International Commission for the Protection of the Waters of Lake Geneva), SIG (Geneva Industrial Services) and the Geneva University. The session was held in a hybrid format to allow our members from countries still subject to restrictions related to Covid-19 to participate in the discussions throughout the week.


On Lake Geneva, with the Henry Dunant boat

For this 10th session in Switzerland dedicated to the theme “River, Lake and City: the conditions for a successful alliance”, a delegation of 25 people, IFGR members and guests, met for a week.

New members were welcomed to the Rivers Committee at this occasion:

  • Anoulak Kittikhoun, Head of Strategy and Partnerships at the Secretariat of the Mekong River Commission (Laos),
  • Dominique Bérod, Head of the Earth System Monitoring Division at the World Meteorological Organization (Switzerland),
  • Jacqueline Nyirakamana, Chair of the Nile Technical Advisory Committee for the Rwandan Ministry of Environment (Rwanda).

Guests were also welcomed in the delegation and were able to participate to IFGR’s work for the duration of the session:

  • Runa Khan, Founder and President of the Friendship Association (Bangladesh)
  • Cyrille Vallet, Senior project director, EGIS Eau
  • Luis G. M. Silva, Senior scientist and lecturer, Ecohydraulics, Zürich Federal Polytechnic School (ETHZ)
  • Laurent Perrin, Architect Urbanist, Institut Paris Région



The functions and uses of the river and the lake, flood risk management and its perception by the populations, as well as water in the city and the production and processing of water-related data were the main topics discussed.










Until the publication online of a booklet of recommendations developed from the reflections of this week of international session, we invite you to watch or re-watch below the official restitution of the work of the IFGR delegation which took place on Friday, October 1st at the Société Nautique de Genève and gathered around sixty people, in the presence of Erik Orsenna, Chairman of IFGR, Elisabeth Ayrault, Founding member of IFGR, and Antonio Hodgers, State Councillor of the Republic and Canton of Geneva.


Watch the video of the official restitution

Watch the video report on the official restitution by the swiss media “Léman Bleu”

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